A scale is not a switch

In the wake of this epic 1996-level wild thread/discussion about marriage difficulty for young Christian men and women these days, the male blogger Deep Strength posted a long rambling thing about “feminine beauty” that made me realize a key part of where some men are talking past some women in these matters.

A scale is not a switch.  When some men use the classic 10 point scale for looks/beauty/attractiveness, they aren’t using it as a scale, but as a switch.  On/off.  Yes/No (to the question of whether they might, in the abstract, desire to know a woman in the Biblical sense).  That is why Deep Strength thinks the young woman in his post went from a “3” to an “8” when she didn’t budge much in the scale sense.  She wasn’t a 3 or an 8 to start with.  She was an average girl who now looks above average because she puts more effort into her dress and carriage and lost weight via exercise and diet.  On a ten point scale she went from 5 to 6.

But this blogger converted “went from girl I would never think of desiring to girl I might have desirous thoughts of right now” into ten point scale language. “From a 3 to an 8!”

This is, needless to say, confusing.  He could have simply used a switch and reduced confusion dramatically.

This explains the obsession with “becoming an 8”, or “so and so is an 8 for sure!” by some men discussing love, sex and marriage.   8 is the switch.

He may be too young to remember Hot or Not.  That is all he needs, and all anyone needs who insists on limiting female beauty to a switch.

Related to this, Deep Strength’s post concludes that young Christian women should wear the clothing the young woman (pictured in his example towards the end of his very long post) wears at 124 pounds to show that they’d like to be considered marriage-worthy by men around them.

Yes/No?  No.

ETA 4/12/17: Deep Strength responds here with “Girls are dumb and don’t know things, amirite?” but about 500x longer.

 

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69 thoughts on “A scale is not a switch

  1. Yes.

    And about the last dress–yeah. That’s mid-thigh, and that young woman probably can’t sit down in that dress. It probably requires constant yanking down. Just for photographic purposes, I suspect.

    It’s a constant of life in the “Christian” manosphere that the guys seem stone-blind with regard to modesty. I’m not that prissy myself in normal life, but they seem to require a very obvious display of sexuality in order to see a woman as pretty.

    More points:

    –The post is all about female beauty and attraction, but that clearly is not the whole story as to who men actually marry. Beauty is just a piece of the pie. Otherwise, there would be a lot more 18-year-old brides.
    –The big percentage chart is really weird. In practice, any particular item can be much more important, if it’s bad enough.
    –“Additionally, there are some other almost intangible components of a girl demeanor like enthusiasm, bubbly-ness, and innocence that may also be attractive to men. In other words, it may signify that a woman is “untainted” or at least less tainted from the world.” Or–extremely annoying. I suspect tastes vary.
    –I wonder if DS knows about hair extensions…
    –“God gave us free will, so we can change how we act. From what I’ve seen most women simply do not want to change how they act to increase their percentages. Most women could get themselves to a 7-8+ with some deconditioning from the world. After all, it’s not in the nature of women to be masculine but feminine.” So, women need to work really hard at being natural. Ooookay.
    –“Laugh at his jokes.” Better–go for a man whose sense of humor you appreciate.

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  2. ” Most women could get themselves to a 7-8+ with some deconditioning from the world.”

    Also, come to think of it, the transformation DS shows in the photographs is the very opposite of “deconditioning from the world.” The changes that the young woman has made are not entirely a bad thing, but it’s ridiculous to spiritualize a transformation which is no doubt reaping lots of worldly advantage and applause.

    Awful thought: DS doing his “hot or not?” thing on St. Terese of Lisieux.

    http://www.littleflower.org/therese/life-story/

    Also, come to think of it, a round face is actually more childlike.

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  3. He sure does use a lot of words to say “You can become more attractive by exercise, eating healthy, paying attention to what make-up and closthes you wear and having good hygiene.”

    Sheesh. Every girl knows this already. Common-sense.

    Then the rambling about how different traits will be rated differently by different men. Gee, we didn’t know that different people have different preferences for what they are attracted to. What’s the point of the scale when the standard for each number on it varies so greatly from man to man?

    AmyP “Laugh at his jokes.” “Better–go for a man whose sense of humor you appreciate.”

    Right. Fake-laughing at his jokes to make him feel more manly is manipulative really. If you can’t see yourself doing it for the next 50 years, you should probably move on. If someone is really funny, you don’t need to be told to laugh at his jokes. It will be a natural response.

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  4. This new one is interesting

    https://deepstrength.wordpress.com/2017/04/11/paranoia/

    DS approvingly quotes:

    “Feminists, egalitarians, and complementarians are paranoid that men are going to abuse women because they have authority. They make up stories about how “Patriarchy” was used to abuse women in the OT and NT when the Law of Moses and Jesus show us that Authority is mean to Protect, Provide, and Love. They live in Fear not Love.”

    DS replies, “The one theme that is common between feminists, egalitarians, and complementarians in their waywardness from God’s design is that they promote paranoia in women and men of men in authority. This is true whether in marriages, the Church, or elsewhere. They’re all paranoid of men in authority positions.”

    I’ve long been bemused by the treatment that complementarians get in the manosphere, when complementarians get the exact opposite treatment elsewhere–complementarians are treated as simultaneously way too aware of abuse of authority, and at the same time insensitive to it.

    ??????

    I suppose one of the things going on is that the high-profile complementarians that the manosphere criticizes tend to be people with pastoral experience who have dealt with actual sticky situations of abuse of authority, so they’ve got to grapple with how to deal with it, whereas manosphereans (almost to a man) have no pastoral experience, and just deny the existence of any problems.

    I suppose DS is (relatively speaking) rather young, and just does not have the sort of mental rolodex of bad behavior by people in authority that an older person would have. But man oh man, we have the internet now–look at what your opponents are talking about it and THINK.

    (Some helpful key words: Jim Jones, Josh Duggar, Papa Pilgrim, Bill Gothard, Doug Phillips, Warren Jeffs and Steven Sitler.)

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    • AmyP “I’ve long been bemused by the treatment that complementarians get in the manosphere, when complementarians get the exact opposite treatment elsewhere”

      Complementarianism implies the wife actually has strengths and benefits she brings to the table that he lacks. Manospherians don’t like that. She needs to look up to and be less than the husband in all ways because if he doesn’t have more status compared to her, she won’t get the tingles and, gasp, she might turn into a frigid wife!

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      • Two Cent Woman said:

        “Complementarianism implies the wife actually has strengths and benefits she brings to the table that he lacks. Manospherians don’t like that. She needs to look up to and be less than the husband in all ways because if he doesn’t have more status compared to her, she won’t get the tingles and, gasp, she might turn into a frigid wife!”

        That’s pretty much it.

        Second look at gay marriage?

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  5. Two-Cent Woman said:

    “He sure does use a lot of words to say “You can become more attractive by exercise, eating healthy, paying attention to what make-up and closthes you wear and having good hygiene.”

    “Sheesh. Every girl knows this already. Common-sense.”

    More than that–pretty much every magazine directed at girls and women has this message. It’s virtually impossible to so much as buy a loaf of bread without being exposed to that message–repeatedly.

    “Then the rambling about how different traits will be rated differently by different men. Gee, we didn’t know that different people have different preferences for what they are attracted to. What’s the point of the scale when the standard for each number on it varies so greatly from man to man?”

    Yep. Plus, if there’s a significantly negative trait (say, offensive body odor), it will swamp the effect of getting everything else right.

    AmyP “Laugh at his jokes.” “Better–go for a man whose sense of humor you appreciate.”

    “Fake-laughing at his jokes to make him feel more manly is manipulative really. If you can’t see yourself doing it for the next 50 years, you should probably move on. If someone is really funny, you don’t need to be told to laugh at his jokes. It will be a natural response.”

    EXACTLY.

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  6. I don’t put a whole lot of stock in the 1-10 scale myself, but mainly because my own husband has changed the way I see it. He looks for a certain “thing” that stands out, assuming a woman isn’t just huge.

    Interesting eyes might catch his attention on a chick not classically beautiful. Or full lips. He has a thing about lips. Perhaps it’s the artist in him, but he finds the scale thing “nerdy”. And from him that’s saying something,. I guess he’s a switch guy, LOL.

    Nevertheless, the young woman in the pictures used (if one were doing the scale thing) certainly improved her looks far more than just a little bit, as indicated by the phrase “5-6”. The change was more drastic.

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    • Right E. Deti at DS seems to think it weirds us out to see posts like this. AS IF women don’t already know that to men women’s looks are important. We know it very young. As soon as we can comprehend out first princess movie. It’s the nerd factor of making up a scale and dedicating so much time to explaining it that comes across as just plain weird.

      Every person on the planet who has an interest in the opposite sex will assess others based on their looks and determine “kinda cute, OMG so hot or nope, never.” It’s just typing it all out like it’s not common knowledge that leaves us (or me anyway) scratching my head and thinking, WTH? Are some so socially inept they don’t know all this already? Do we need a scale to know there’s different levels of attractiveness? If you’re human and you’ve noticed by your own observation that people are more or less attractive to you, then you know it’s most likely the same for most others.

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    • Nah, it totally pains me to say this, but roissy of all people is basically correct that you can only go up or down a little bit if you’re really treating 1-10 as a scale of looks/appeal/attractiveness with 10 being practically perfection walking around. An average girl worked hard to get healthier and lose a lot of weight and she’s above average, but not by much. So, from a 5 to a 6.

      It’s more noticeable with the “you’re fat but have a pretty face” women. The underlying 6/7 (usually) was already there, it was just under the fat, but the above average looks got them better treatment than average or below average fat women in that scenario.

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  7. DS said:

    “Both Christian and secular men have standards for who they “would or would not do” but they also have a higher floor for “who they would marry.” This is why semi-attractive or attractive sluts are for pumping and dumping, but the attractive chaste lady is what they would look for to marry.”

    https://deepstrength.wordpress.com/2017/04/12/women-dont-really-understand-male-attraction-and-implications/

    ????

    The whole point of the initial post on the monster thread was that that ain’t so–both secular and Christian men have a lot of tolerance for past peccadilloes from women they find attractive–in fact current peccadilloes tend to render women more attractive rather than less.

    I feel like there’s a major confusion here between what Christian manosphere guys feel ought to happen and what actually does.

    “She most certainly did not go from a “5” to a “6” from a male perspective. It is vastly underestimating the importance of physical attractiveness.”

    She was a very average looking girl at the beginning, so a 5 out of 10 sounds very fair. If her final picture is an 8 (which I admit is possible), that doesn’t leave a lot of room at the top for much more attractive women.

    I’m pretty sure that this young woman would find gentlemen friends from 185 on down, and at 197 with a little better presentation. How do I know this? Because I see young women bigger than 200 pounds with boyfriends at the grocery store ALL the time. It is true that they’re probably not married, but that’s a socioeconomic issue, with fat meaning poor meaning not a lot of marriage.

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  8. Here’s a theory: Everybody’s right…in a particular context. Here’s an explanation, based on many years spent people-watching on campus and at the grocery store.

    I think she would initially be a 5 at the grocery and then an 8 at the grocery store after her transformation.

    However, she’d be a 3 initially on campus and then a 6 after her metamorphosis (possibly a 7).

    I think her final look would be stunning in a lower-middle class context but pretty average among 4-year college women.

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    • As I commented to elspeth, to me the scale is pretty strict. It takes a fair bit to get into the 7 range. The canonical HB8 would be someone attractive enough to do some lower-tier catalog modelling, with 9 being the more beautiful supermodels and actresses, and 10 being very rare overall. In practical terms “8” tends to represent the top of the scale as people throw it around, so I am scaling accordingly when I talk about the woman in those pictures as a 5 or a 6. She was never as plain/below average as a 3, but she’s not an 8 now either.

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      • I have to agree with you about the 5-6 or rather “average” designation of the 124lb pic. I think the 8 rating is given more on her looking sexually available by the way she is dressed and posed with the hip jutting out to over emphasize hip-to-waist ratio.

        Dress her in the plain cardigan, well-below the knee flowing floral skirt, ballet flats and pose her simply standing up straight, facing the camera, with a nice smile and her hands simply folded in front of her and voila, 5-6 average, pretty girl.

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        • “I think the 8 rating is given more on her looking sexually available by the way she is dressed and posed with the hip jutting out to over emphasize hip-to-waist ratio.

          “Dress her in the plain cardigan, well-below the knee flowing floral skirt, ballet flats and pose her simply standing up straight, facing the camera, with a nice smile and her hands simply folded in front of her and voila, 5-6 average, pretty girl.”

          Yep.

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  9. I also have to say that i didn’t read the response post except the little piece they put in the trackback, but there is a narcissism to the idea that no woman can understand any man’s desires regarding women when this is demonstrably untrue via observational and historical knowledge across multiple cultures.

    Obviously that girl is DS’s “type” (or one of them, some men have multiple types), so he’s offended at the idea that on a real ten point scale, his type might be *gasp* average (like *most people everywhere*) and not well into the top 10 or 20 percent of girls because, after all, he likes her look, therefore in true Lake Wobegon fashion his preferred type of girl simply has to be top-tier. The “she was a 3 before” was just an expression of discontent that his preferred type was overweight by a fair amount and dressing poorly to boot. Can’t be that he’s normal/average and likes normal/average girls with cheerful manners.

    This is a big part of what couldn’t get said in the MEGATHREAD9000 because half the commenters travelled back in time to 1996 and had an epic unthreaded throwdown instead of a discussion. Most people are average AND THIS IS OK. It really is.

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    • TPC said:

      “Most people are average AND THIS IS OK. It really is.”

      Yeah–I was thinking that same thing before you said it. Most people are average. There is a bell curve with most people in the middle and the very ugly or very attractive are unusual.

      That whole discussion Chez DS assumes an equal number of people at all points on the 10-point scale–or in any case, an overweighting of the tails.

      I think you’re quite right about DS having a type and assuming that it must be the rule to all male attraction.

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  10. Another thought.

    The few single Christian virgin women who are lamenting the difficulty in finding the male counterpart who would make a suitable husband AND who unfortunately turn to the “Christian” manosphere for infomation aren’t lacking in this knowledge of what is attractive to the opposite sex.

    The confusion comes in when trying to mesh modest with hot. Christian manos will put up their little scales of hotness or sexual attractiveness while at the same time talking about how they want a modest, quiet, meek, submissive virgin (who OTOH can be an enthusiastic freak in bed ANY AND EVERY TIME THE GUY WANTS IT.) Talk about getting mixed messages. Look at the after pic that DS featured. AmyP’s point is well taken. Guys will rate her as someone very doable but she doesn’t scream modest Christian virgin. She does have the long hair and the dress though.

    But then these same Christian virgins visit Titus 2 type women’s blogs and see the long hair and the dress. It looks a lot different than red riding hood in DS’s pic.

    See here –

    https://finerfem.com/2014/04/04/elegant-modesty-anne-kootz/

    The problem is that most men (at least not “Christian” manospherians) would not give them a second glance because “not hot enough.” The Christo-manos will tell them to up their sexual attractiveness but I have a feeling the modest dress in the above pic is not what they are thinking of.

    Dress like red ridinghood and you’ll get plenty of male attention but most likely it’s not going to be from the rare virgin (or reformed virgin) gentleman who is looking for a traditional wife. Dress like the traditional gals in the pic I featured and you will largely be ignored. Unless you can find that rare traditional guy who places the inner woman above that which is outward and be willing to get to know you better despite not looking “hot.” This is rare and difficult to find and just as diffcult as the guy seeking the traditional woman. So how does the modest Christian virgin actually BE modest without being invisibile and at the same time look hot enough to get the RIGHT guy’s attention?

    The manos want a girl who acts like the traditional girls in the photo but who can also be Miss Porn Star to their sexual desires and look like one too. The problem is that the two don’t mesh very well IRL.

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    • Eh, I dressed not so different before I got married, my husband noticed just fine. Not get all nitty-gritty, but I guess I kinda have to, but vast numbers of virgins, real virgins have a kind of awkwardness that you can’t imitate and which some men mistake for not having sexual interest. It’s a kind of gangliness. It admittedly does disappear in older virgins and is rarely present in the kind of virgin who chooses the life religious IME. But it’s very common and men fed on the trash diet of modern porn and sexed-up imagery everywhere can be put off by this natural lack of affectedness that does denote not having had sex yet.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Yes. Completely agree with your analysis. My point is that the manos send such mixed messages to virgin girls who seem to think they have something to offer in the way of advice. They talk about hotness and modesty in the same breath and the virgin, who is already a little awkward, wonders how in the world to pull off both to attract the men the manos promise will show up if they do it.

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      • TPC said:

        “Not get all nitty-gritty, but I guess I kinda have to, but vast numbers of virgins, real virgins have a kind of awkwardness that you can’t imitate and which some men mistake for not having sexual interest. It’s a kind of gangliness. It admittedly does disappear in older virgins and is rarely present in the kind of virgin who chooses the life religious IME. But it’s very common and men fed on the trash diet of modern porn and sexed-up imagery everywhere can be put off by this natural lack of affectedness that does denote not having had sex yet.”

        Yeah.

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      • @ TPC:

        1-You are above average attractiveness, so you could get away with being uber-modest and still be noticed. Those of us in the murky middle had to put in a bit more effort. Still not sure how on EARTH I got the guy I got, but…

        2) I agree that inexperienced women are not going to be inclined to give off a come-hither vibe and are not comfortable with instigating even subtle pursuit. Whether or not this expectation is reasonable, justified, or even traditional is open to debate but it is what it is.

        3) There comes a point when you have to trust Providence because the voices of the world (which have also infiltrated the church to a large degree) will make you crazy and have you thinking something is wrong with you when in reality you’re one standing right side up in an upside down world.

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    • Two Cent Woman:

      Yeah. Those girls are cute, but not hot.

      I feel like a DS-approved bubbly personality might help a lot, but if that’s not one’s natural personality, that’s hard to develop without lots of social opportunities and time. I’ve discussed this elsewhere, but the need to have time to develop socially is the reason that the manosphere timelines for women are so unreasonable–a lot of shy women are just starting to open up in their early 20s.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Come to think of it, seeing bubbly as a sign of girlish innocence is a big mistake.

        Some of us who were more reserved as girls have to really work at it for years to get to bubbly–for us it’s a product of art, not nature.

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    • “One of my twins is bubbly. Men seem to like it. They just all seem to be of the nonChristian variety, LOL.”

      If men like it, eventually a Christian guy will turn up and like it, too.

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      • If men like it, eventually a Christian guy will turn up and like it, too.

        The thing with innocent bubblyness is that it can be easily misinterpreted. I rarely go to Bubbly Girl’s place of employment when she’s working, so I hear about this more than anything but I did get a glimpse of it once.

        She is a comic book fan. Her father’s daughter very much in that regard. I just go to the movies and escape while enjoying watching Idris Elba and Chris Hemsworth look good onscreen. She, like her dad when he had time for that, actually read the comic books, and enjoys talking about that kind of stuff.

        So if a 35-year-old guy comes through her line wearing a Thor, Capt. America, or Aquaman t-shirt, she’s going to strike up a conversation. And laugh and smile and exude ebullience because that’s her thing. More than once it has been assumed she was sending signals when she wasn’t, she’s had to dial it back and politely decline to give him her number. There are all kinds of things one can say about whether or not she should entertain someone that much older, but it’s moot. She’s not interested. She’s also the least likely of the three older girls to wear dresses or makeup.

        All that to say…Despite much speculation and projection to the contrary, I fully agree with you. It will all work out for our girls. They’re’ 21 and 22 after all, not 28 or 29.

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  11. When I went off to college in Southern California in the early 90s, I must have looked (at least some of the time) like an FLDS escapee. It took years of lavishly spending my income on clothes and getting lots of help and pointers from my sis and friends before I looked half-way decent.

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  12. Not to hog your thread, but when I was in college, the only girl I knew who got married out of college was a natural redhead who looked like either the 165 or 185 pound picture. Her husband was the valedictorian of our class and one of his two (!) majors was physics. (She was bright, too.)

    I talked occasionally to an old boyfriend of hers who was obviously still carrying a flame for her–he was very effusive about thinking she was very hot stuff. (This was in an area and at a school where there are lots of pretty girls, but of course being in science does create artificial local shortages.)

    I think DS may not understand male attraction, either.

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  13. We’re talking past one another and it grieves me. :/ Y’all know I’ve written extensively about this. I mean, like literally a book. How many blog posts? A pinboard? What do I have to do, set off flares?

    1) Attraction involves noticing the other person… so the bubbly personality has an advantage, they are noticed. In the absence of chattiness, bright colors (pink or red, not orange/yellow), clothing that moves, clothing that makes noise, anything that sets you out from the crowd about 5% is good. Whether or not we who are more reserved LIKE that or not… it’s a true thing.

    2) Approach is made easier by signals of availability – which include being talkative, or at least attentive. Our kids don’t get much people-time, compared to previous generations – so they need a *lot* of ego-stroking/safe-space to keep moving forward on a “let’s get to know one another” trajectory. This is problematic. It also leaves that 5% who are confident in themselves dripping with offers.

    3) Everyone wants to marry a healthy genetic partner, so the tells for that are always attractive. I’ve got no hips, of course it bums me out when folks talk about W-H-R. I could diet down to 100lb and not have hips. Whatever, it’s still *true*. And it’s fair – I’d have died in childbed without a c/s. Shiny hair, bright eyes, etc etc etc. Much of this can be faked, but it’s an instinctive desire, not an intellectual analysis – so why complain about it? Youth itself is also very attractive, to people who are older.

    4) Good bone structure is another health-tell, as well as a wealth-tell (childhood nutrition, braces, etc).

    5) Wealth-tells are part of attraction, but are more important for competitive beauty… in other words, this is where women are telling you that you’re amazing and the men are shrugging.

    6) Beauty is important to the mating game, but it’s a gift, not a virtue from within. We act (on all sides) like it is. I strongly believe that everyone should do what they can to be as beautiful as possible with their raw materials, but I also don’t want to see anyone like I did at the dry cleaners today – dieted down to a size 0 with so many facial injections that her skin was swollen and shiny. -shudder- It is appropriate for my 44yo self to look 44. If you allow yourself to become fearful of fat, of wrinkles, of dirt, of scars – of life – you damage yourself. Do what you can with what you have, get on with life.

    7) A lot of women (and men) these days don’t take much interest in their basic looks or grooming, and then expect the opposite sex to come running. I have seen this IRL, not online. Like, they KNOW (as another commentor mentioned) that looking better would be helpful, but there’s this weird almost-anger at life so they don’t want to pony up, and I’m talking about “wear a pretty dress” not “lose 50lb”. It’s disheartening. I am often the best-dressed person in a group … wearing a cotton blouse and a denim skirt. Things I clean the bathroom in. This is part of what the gentlemen are talking about, IMO, when they say that “women could raise their SMV if they’d just try…” You know, everyone dressing like a schlub is a valid complaint.

    8) Same weird thing goes for femininity – I have more conversations with women these days who are proud of not owning any skirts, because they “aren’t girly-girls”. Excuse me, since when does femininity = uselessness? To this, I take offense. Harumph. Call me weak and we’re going to the gym. Or the kitchen.

    9) I think the guys are using women for their scales that are the ones they see. Lots of women at the lower end of the scale are essentially invisible. And how many stunners do you know, who get dressed to the 9s when you meet up with them? Nothing wrong here, just so that you know that that’s what’s being discussed.

    10) Models actually have odd proportions and over-large features, they’re not all that pretty most of the time. (Sports Illustrated aside). They do, however, have amazing skin.

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    • You make good points Hearth.

      I do think though, that there are a lot of assumptions being made bout what women don’t *get* that are kind of crazy. The idea that women don’t KNOW this stuff instinctively is absurd. They *get it* just fine.

      I have a pretty good WHR now, even at 45 after 5 babies birthed. Before kids? Crazy. You know what I did when I decided I wanted my husband’s attention? The same thing you did as it relates to your endowment when you were trying to look good for your DH. I shined a spotlight on it. How did a girl who had been sheltered and hardly even been on a date know to do that?

      For many women the pain of staying the same hasn’t overrun the comfort of staying where they are because men are doing relationships with and marrying chubby girls, girls who don’t dress up, don’t spruce up, all the time. We all see it around us. Everyone’s standards have fallen. There is a huge tendency online for self-selected groups of people to project their views and preferences onto the population writ large. And it just doesn’t translate if you’re paying any attention.

      The issue (particularly when you’re discussing modest girls) is finding the line. DS offered up three pics of women in what he called modest dresses. The first one was a red fit and flare. My daughter that you met, has a crazy WHR. Takes after her mother. She would wear the fit and flare dress, no problem.

      She would not wear a dresses fitted from top to bottom. She thinks it is immodest to show off her curves. Why? Because she knows -instinctively- that her small waist and shapely hips on display are sexually attractive. Truth be told, her modesty standards are often stricter than mine.

      And back to square one we go because, as if often lamented when it comes to women in the church, almost everyone’s preferences have been shaped by the dominant culture.

      Liked by 1 person

      • “I do think though, that there are a lot of assumptions being made bout what women don’t *get* that are kind of crazy. The idea that women don’t KNOW this stuff instinctively is absurd. They *get it* just fine.”

        Not to mention the vast quantities of fashion/beauty magazines that women 18-22 consume, or used to…

        Do these guys not go to the grocery store or something? There’s a vast amount of beauty information available every month for $3.99 an issue–my grocery store probably has a dozen different publications just at the checkstands.

        There are waaay, waaaay more magazines on sale explaining to women how to look hot for men than there are magazines explaining to men how to look hot for women.

        “The issue (particularly when you’re discussing modest girls) is finding the line. DS offered up three pics of women in what he called modest dresses.”

        This I gotta see. Where is this?

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        • In the thread. The dresses were fairly modest. They weren’t immodest. But a young woman with a 27 inch waist and 40 inch hips isn’t gonna hang those dressed the same way those models do. See my “Sexy School Daze” post to catch the difference.

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          • This was funny:

            “The real “sexually attractive” part of the 124 lbs picture is the bust to waist to hip ratio that is extremely alluring to men.”

            Ame sai: “i think this is something women need to know. it’s not something i would have thought of on my own.”

            *facepalm*

            Liked by 1 person

          • About the three dresses:

            1. I suspect the first one isn’t doing the model any favors–I bet she’s a lot prettier than that dress makes her look. I suspect the elbow-length sleeve is creating the illusion of a thicker waist.

            2. No complaints at all about the second dress. Good print scale, nice coordination with her hair color. The diagonal pattern also emphasizes the waist. I think she needs maybe a little bit more hair/makeup interest to avoid having the dress wear her–but the geometry is very good.

            3. Third dress–I don’t like either the color (too harsh for her) or the print scale on that dress. That is a fat lady print–that woman should not be wearing it. It camouflages rather than emphasizes her waist/hip ratio.

            Hearthie?

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            • He tried. It’s fine. They’re not perfect, but women’s clothing isn’t his gig.

              It’s mine. (This pinboard has been up for years now).

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              • Eh, he’s writing about it as if it were, and that he doesn’t know much about it, is, well, telling given his whole response post about the supposed ignorance of women regarding men. Caveat: not reading the response post because I thought the discussion was pretty settled already.

                And there are certainly normal men who have a good eye when it comes to women’s wear.

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              • Nice.

                I am a bit leery of skirt-blouse outfits, though, as they tend to thicken up the waist, at least compared to dresses. (I deeply regret a certain long denim skirt I wore in the early 90s.)

                Big Girl and I just got back from Hidden Figures, and there were a lot of nice dresses in that.

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    • Hearthie,

      I think you made a lot of good points over there.

      “I think the guys are using women for their scales that are the ones they see. Lots of women at the lower end of the scale are essentially invisible. And how many stunners do you know, who get dressed to the 9s when you meet up with them? Nothing wrong here, just so that you know that that’s what’s being discussed.”

      Yeah. As you mentioned, when they called the redhead a 3 in her “before” picture, that does not leave nearly enough room on the 10 point scale to cover the fat-lady-on-the-scooter types. (I was thinking the exact same thing.)

      “10) Models actually have odd proportions and over-large features, they’re not all that pretty most of the time. (Sports Illustrated aside). They do, however, have amazing skin.”

      Yeah.

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  14. Probably the 10s are hiding out in athletics fields. No one notices because they’re all sweaty and covered with dirt. You make them 10s by … well, give me 24 hours and $1000. Standard makeover stuff – hair, good clothes, etc.

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  15. DS said:

    “Yeah, if you read Heartiste comments, the men tend to generally say that she went from around 5ish at 140 lbs to 6ish at 132 lbs to 8ish at 124 lbs. There’s a large SMV jump in the last 8-16 lbs because she starts to gain the waist-hip curves, dress for attractiveness, and so on. Women that are even as little as 10-20 lbs overweight and lose it all will tend to experience bigger SMV increases as the waist to hip ratio comes in than those who are 40-50 lbs overweight down to 10-20 lbs overweight.”

    She had the waist-hip curves starting from 185–it’s just her clothing was not optimal. Put her in better clothes, and she’d look 10X better, even at the higher weights.

    I really rocked floral dresses in the 90s, and I rarely got below 160 pounds.

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    • Your mention of exact numbers and how certain women look at certain weights reminded me of how varied it can be. Now I’m a tall woman, but still. I am just shy of 160 pounds in this photo. DH does not like me any lower than that. He would force feed me a sandwich, LOL.

      In fact, the girl in the pictures actually looks better (to me) in her 165 photo than she does in her 155 photo. She’s cute anyway, but the clothes you wear make a huge difference (y’all need to check out Hearth’s pro blog for real and get some help). So do genetics, height, etc. For instance, my face has never been fat, except during pregnancies.

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      • I agree about the 165 versus 155 photos–I think the sleeves are inherently fattening on her and you can tell in the 165 photo that she does have nice bust-waist-hip proportions. The 140 outfit is kind of a disaster. I think if she were wearing the 132 outfit at 140 that she’d look just as good.

        I guess now I know why there are so many chubby girls at the grocery store in tank tops and shorts–as you can tell from those photos, it’s really not the worst possible look for big girls with hour glass figures.

        The last photo is so hard to compare to the others, because it’s so much more styled and the type of clothing is so different. Also, she’s doing some of these camera-fooling techniques (both the knee pop and the ankle cross, if I’m not mistaken):

        http://mashable.com/2013/06/09/cliched-photo-poses/#drM.FkAnWkqH

        I think you get a fairer comparison by using the 132 photo, which is a much more apples to apples comparison with her previous photos.

        I have an odd body type, as I have stubby legs but a large/tall torso and am just under 5’3″ (so just a smidge below average height). I wasn’t religiously weighing myself back in the day, but I looked pretty darn good with an hourglass figure at 155-160 and 90s floral dresses. I was size 12/14 in high school and college and came back from overseas a size 12, which was (for me) AMAZING. (Grad school and the toddler years have since taken their toll–oddly, pregnancy itself and infancy doesn’t seem to be a big problem for weight for me.)

        Big Girl did the usual thing for girls in our family and ballooned alarmingly between 9-12 but has stretched out from 13-14. I have been very relieved and encouraged by the fact that she’s very much taken to heart what we’ve told her about portions, fruits and veggies, and trying for an hour of physical activity a day. She’s also apparently grown out of being the sugar fiend that she was as a tween. She’s 138 pounds and around 5’5″ at 14–which is probably a lot better than I ever was in high school, especially allowing for height differences. (I was kind of skittish about the scale in my younger years, so I don’t have a lot of solid data.) Sizes vary, but I believe I was wearing size 10 in adult sizes as a 10-year-old, whereas Big Girl wears size 10 jeans and 10-12 yoga pants today. (She has a very athletic upper middle class peer group.)

        I’m very happy that we’ve been able to get through to Big Girl. With regard to women not understanding the importance of physical appearance, normal middle class parents nag their teenage daughters really hard about weight and personal appearance. My parents were just barely middle class when I was in high school and my mom is a lifelong dieter and tried hard to control my eating, but it just wasn’t something that I internalized. Both I and my sister engaged in a lot of sneak eating. I feel like the My Plate visual has been very helpful for me as a parent in helping kids internalize a picture of what their eating ought to look like:

        https://www.choosemyplate.gov/MyPlate

        I feel like DS et al do not have a very good picture of how middle class parents normally deal with daughters’ weight, the amount of pressure that a lot of girls get from parents, or the socioeconomic dimension of weight in girls. Families who have slender, athletic daughters are typically putting A LOT of family resources into keeping kids active.

        Interestingly, the “budget” model of eating and exercise has been very helpful to Big Girl. She’s gotten careful about food and exercise at the same time that she’s gotten good with her money. I was not brought up with the budget model for money, but our kids have grown up with it, so it’s very intuitive to apply it to food, too.

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        • Also, she’s doing some of these camera-fooling techniques (both the knee pop

          I thought that about the 124 pic with the knee pop to one side which makes WHR look even more pronounced. One of the reasons I use that one photo of myself as fitspiration is because it was candid. I didn’t know the guy was taking a picture of me until after it was shown later.

          Pics where you stand *just so* are hard to use as indicative of anything. I believe Hearth calls them “selfie angles”. Candid shots are better for reality sake, and fortunately (or unfortunately) my DH takes plenty.

          how middle class parents normally deal with daughters’ weight, the amount of pressure that a lot of girls get from parents, or the socioeconomic dimension of weight in girls. Families who have slender, athletic daughters are typically putting A LOT of family resources into keeping kids active.

          Truthfully, we have family members at even the lower socioeconomic levels, and they hound their daughters about their weight, too.

          Mainly, for those of us in our 40s (even in a black working class neighborhood in which I grew up), it just wasn’t a thing for a young woman to be fat when she hadn’t had any babies yet. It’s common now, but it was less common when I was a teenager. We were just more active as a general rule, and we didn’t eat a lot of junk and fast food because going out to eat -even fr fast food-was a rare treat.

          In our parents’ generation, being overweight as a rule just was NOT a thing at all.

          Heck, I can remember when my youngest (now 8) was three and one of my parents said, “You shouldn’t still be this chubby, should you?”

          I was 40 years old, LOL.

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          • “Mainly, for those of us in our 40s (even in a black working class neighborhood in which I grew up), it just wasn’t a thing for a young woman to be fat when she hadn’t had any babies yet. It’s common now, but it was less common when I was a teenager. We were just more active as a general rule, and we didn’t eat a lot of junk and fast food because going out to eat -even fr fast food-was a rare treat.
            In our parents’ generation, being overweight as a rule just was NOT a thing at all.
            Heck, I can remember when my youngest (now 8) was three and one of my parents said, “You shouldn’t still be this chubby, should you?”I was 40 years old, LOL.”

            Yeah. I’ve encountered that sort of thing myself. In fact, my dad has paid me a per pound rate for documented weight loss (20 pounds) well into my 30s (his mom did the same for him in his 50s). I don’t know about my dad, but my lost weight is all back now…

            With regard to poor families hounding teen daughters, I suspect that it just isn’t going to be as effective when a) there are many hours without supervision b) when there isn’t vigorous promotion of physical activity c) when there’s a lack of fun physical activity d) when the family diet is bad or e) other family members are chowing down on whatever in front of the teen daughters but only the teen daughters are being singled out for admonitions.

            My dad was a pint-of-whole-chocolate-milk-box-of-cookies-box-of-donuts-mini-pecan-pie-mini-cherry-pie-Pepsi-Pepsi-Pepsi type guy when I was a kid, while my mom was (as I realize now) constantly dieting. He pretty much literally could not buy gas without getting two items on that list for himself (plus something for whatever lucky kid was along for the ride). It wasn’t that bad for my dad at the time because he had pretty high caloric needs then, but it did catch up with him starting in his 40s. As my dad was the parent who was put up on a pedestal in my family, there really wasn’t a prayer that my mom’s example of nibbling and asking for a teeny tiny slice of cake was going to have a chance up against my dad’s big box of donuts…

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            • It is a major challenge to get/keep your kids active if you need to keep them inside (or in a small back yard). They get bored pretty quickly and so would I. That’s why weight has become a wealth-indicator as well as health-indicator.

              I’m short, long-torso’d too, I just don’t have hips. 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

    • I followed some of the link trails back to haleyhalo’s blog and wow, absolutely NOTHING has changed in 7+ years. The exact same talk about virginity and carousels and even whether the 10 point scale is objective/subjective/etc.

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  16. Deti rates 8’s as “8s and 9s would be Playboy centerfolds and some pornstars. Christina Hendricks is an 8.”

    Well, if that’s the case our single Christian virgin girls would do well to avoid being an 8. Certainly isn’t the vibe to give off if seeking marriage with a marriage-minded Christian guy. Also, goes to show that red dress girl’s rating is more about her sex appeal in the dress and seductive pose. Like I said put her in a modest dress and shoes with a nice smile and she’s your average 5 or 6.

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    • Yeah.

      He couldn’t even say “Sports Illustrated swimsuit model” or cover girl–he had to go straight to porn.

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  17. There is a whole series of this red hair girl in bra/undies and/or bikinis set up in the same fashion. I guess the guys must not have seen that yet. I just googled her based on the crossfit tumblr that that shows across the series photo. I googled imaged “crossfit tumblr” and there are a lot more photos. The original tumblr is gone.

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  18. Speaking of food and socioeconomic levels–Big Girl thinks that she is really being treated when I buy a $9.99 box of grocery store sushi for her to split with her brother for lunch on Saturday.

    She doesn’t feel at all deprived, but it’s a relatively low calorie lunch (in the 300 calorie ballpark, I believe).

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    • Some of those are just bad picture/good picture issues.

      Notice how many of the bad ones were straight on, whereas the good ones have a lot of head-tilting.

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    • Most of the women I know are either 6+ on this scale or would be if they dropped a few pounds/magically de-aged. (Meaning, they were hot but now they’re old).

      I think this scale is skewed to the “less attractive” side of the equation.

      Porn stars often aren’t that pretty either, they’re wearing their weight in makeup (anyone ever see that photo set of the stars w/ and w/out makeup?) . A little mascara is good grooming. Being so painted you’re laughable in natural light is another. I know I’m not a guy, but that CAN’T be attractive IRL. (A few guys who are really really into it aside). Do you really want to touch your GF’s face and not feel skin?

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  19. In high school and college I met quite a few girls who looked like that girl’s before picture. Just chubby and plain and average. These women are mostly all married now, to average looking but probably above average income men. None of them really lost weight or started dressing like that woman did at 124 pounds.

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  20. Another thought–that author’s 9s are nearly all cute as a button, but they also all have basically the same face. They’re very cute but a little boring–especially grouped together like that.

    I suspect that he (whoever he is) is somewhat misled by the mathematics of beauty. In real life, great beauties have more to them than just symmetry and small noses. Marilyn Monroe is not the same as Elizabeth Taylor is not the same as Audrey Hepburn is not the same as Sophia Loren is not the same as Brigitte Bardot. If you throw in beauties from different eras, the disparities become even more noticeable.

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  21. There are shifting fashions in female beauty. Here, for example is an 1831 portrait of Natalia Pushkina, the wife of the great Russian poet, and a much admired beauty at the time of the portrait (she’s around 19):

    By 2017 US standards, she’s kind of meh.

    The 1849 portrait is more interesting (she’s in her late 30s there), but it’s not a style of beauty that is currently fashionable in the US:

    Put her into a twin set, mid-calf skirt, and flats, and no manosphere guy would look twice at her.

    And yet her husband wound up being killed in a duel over her, and there were rumors after his death that she was the tsar’s mistress.

    I was also looking at possible and disputed Anne Boleyn portraits, and it’s interesting how plain the portraits mostly look to the 21st century eye:

    https://www.theanneboleynfiles.com/anne-boleyn-portraits-which-is-the-true-face-of-anne-boleyn/

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  22. The fun is not over!

    https://deepstrength.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/feminine-beauty-is-highly-controllable-theory-and-analysis-part-2/

    “Femininity — Hair, girlishness of clothes (dresses, skirts, etc.), girlishness of demeanor, smiling.”

    It isn’t exactly unknown for men to like women in jeans, yoga pants, leggings, and/or short shorts…

    https://www.lyricsbox.com/the-oak-ridge-boys-american-made-lyrics-d65lwwl.html

    “Seductiveness also plays a role, although how much of that should be used by Christian women is questionable.”

    Yeah.

    “Women that are “jaded” by the world are often cynical and this is a huge turn off to men.”

    Marlene Dietrich did OK…

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marlene_Dietrich

    The lady must have had quite the day planner to fit that all in…

    See also the femme fatales of film noir who were such a prominent feature of the “wholesome” 1940s and 1950s:

    http://articles.latimes.com/2010/feb/07/entertainment/la-ca-secondlook7-2010feb07

    I think DS has a tendency to assume his tastes are held by men in general when a number of them are pretty specific.

    ” Her skin clears up since obesity is very inflammatory and easily causes skin issues.”

    It makes just as much sense to assume that a) she aged out of skin problems b) she’s done some sort of treatment and/or c) she’s primped a lot harder for the “after” photo. It’s not like the “after” photo is a close-up. Also, skin condition can vary a lot according to time of cycle–the “after” photo may simply reflect a well-chosen day.

    “There are very little natural curves when she is 132, but as she drops down to 124 lbs her natural curves become much more pronounced.”

    Eh–there is such a thing as Spanx. 8 pounds really does not make that big a difference, but 8 pounds plus good foundation garments can!

    http://www.spanx.com/wedding-season-support?&camp=kw=smbAKOSZj_dc|pcrid|177338860741|spanx|pnt3|GT7MxALf

    Plus, all the optical illusion tricks are being used in the last picture with regard to pose.

    “In any case, if you don’t believe me then here are studies. There is TRUTH to the fact that a .7 waist to hip ratio is sexually attractive to men. Pubmed studies include these, which tend to list a “most attractive” range from about .60-.75 waist to hip ratio in women.”

    I don’t think anybody was arguing with that.

    “Overall, the point is that the last picture is flattering to her now alluring body shape with feminine and beautiful clothing that emphasizes the figure. At 132 lbs the woman likely has around a .9 waist to hip ratio, but in the 124 lbs picture she has around a .75 waist to hip ratio most likely.”

    I think what DS does not get is there is not actually as tight a relationship as he thinks between those ratios and low weight.

    The idea that she had a 0.9 waist-hip ratio at 132 pounds is ridiculous. Obviously, body types vary, but I’ll give myself as an example of how consistent the ratios can be at different weights. At around 20 or 21 (back in the mid-90s), I read an article (probably in Newsweek) about waist-hip ratios and how important it is for perception of female beauty. Having nothing better to do, I took my measurements and was gratified to see that I registered as around .75 (not totally sure about the exact number, but it was definitely in the .70s). My weight at the time was probably about 155. Well, fastforward 20 years. I’ve been pregnant several times and put on a lot of weight–I’m your typical fat early 40s housewife. I pulled out the measuring tape tonight with some trepidation (but in the interests of science), did my measurements and calculated the percentage. I was so surprised by the number that I did the calculation twice. Lo and behold–0.78!

    Like heck that young woman has a 0.9 waist-hip ratio at 132 pounds.

    “A woman can make herself stand out if she takes care of her face, body, and becomes more feminine.”

    This is going to take a lot of time and money. Hope you’re not poor!

    “Heavier resistance training and eat healthy with mostly fruits and vegetables and adequate protein.”

    Again, hope you’re not poor!

    “Laugh at his jokes. Be respectful and follow a man’s lead when on dates. Enthusiastic but not clingly. Running a household is a priority to know. Know the Biblical qualities for how women are to act and do them.”

    Where is “laugh at his jokes” in the Bible?

    If he’s funny, you’ll laugh at his jokes naturally.

    If he’s really unfunny and you don’t like his sense of humor, you’re signing up for a really long, hard trip if you marry him. DON’T DO THAT! A shared sense of humor is very valuable for a married couple’s long-term happiness. Don’t fake it.

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  23. Oh, another thing:

    ” Be respectful and follow a man’s lead when on dates.”

    …except if he wants to have sex.

    I feel like “follow a man’s lead when on dates” is not very adequate advice.

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